John Mayer says being in Dead & Company has “made me a better player”

The group played their final show together this week.

John Mayer

John Mayer. Credit: Erika Goldring

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John Mayer has reflected on his time in Dead & Company following the band’s final tour.

The band wrapped up their last ever tour with three consecutive gigs in San Francisco, the last of which took place on 16 July.

In a new post on Facebook, Mayer says: “This music has made me a better player, and this band made me a better person. I was given the opportunity of a lifetime – to have access to the greatest songbook in modern music and the deepest well of life memories shared by hundreds and thousands of Deadheads who extended their grace and acceptance to me.

“I learned to compromise and to take other people’s chances along with them. I learned to play in real time, to express myself without the distraction of ambition and expectation. I learned to listen, to have musical conversation, and most importantly to be a part of something much bigger than myself.

He continues: “It was never about me. It was about ‘it’ – that spirit that a band and crowd could go looking for together. If I’ve done my job right, I’ll disappear into that beautiful tapestry, the one that began almost 60 years ago and will continue to expand for lifetimes to come.

“I thank you from the bottom of my heart for embracing me and my place in the band, and to Bob, Mickey and Billy – I’ll never be able to fully express my gratitude for your taking a chance on me. Something happened on this tour and I don’t think any of us saw it coming.

“Dead & Company is still a band – we just don’t know when the next show will be. I speak for us all when I say that I look forward to being shown the next shaft of light… I know we will all move towards it together. This band changed my life and I love you all for it. An incredible tour, an unforgettable ride and a beautiful world of memories to visit. I’ll be seeing you…”

Dead & Company formed in 2015, made up of former Grateful Dead members Bob Weir and Mickey Hart, as well as Mayer, Oteil Burbridge and Jeff Chimenti. Grateful Dead’s former drummer Bill Kreutzman was also part of the band till this year, when it was announced he was not joining the band for the tour due to a “shift in creative direction”.

However, Hart has left the door open for Dead & Company to get back on stage in the future. “It’s not final anything. We never said we’ll never play again, but we’ll never tour again,” he told ABC Audio last month.

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